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INCA TRAIL TO MACHU PICCHU 4 days
INCA TRAIL TO MACHU PICCHU 4 days
INCA TRAIL TO MACHU PICCHU INTRODUCTION:
The famous Inca Path toMachu Picchu is a particular Peru trek in the world. The trail sets out from the kilometer 82 of the Cusco – Quillabamba railway, and takes three to four days of tough hiking. The route runs through an impressive range of altitudes, where climates and eco-systems range from the high Andean plain down to the cloud forests. The trail climbs up through two highland passages, (the higher of the two, Warmiwañuska, lies at 4,200 m.a.s.l.) before reaching Machu Picchu through the Inti Punku or Gateway of the Sun.
One of the attractions of the trail is that it winds carved granite Inca settlements (Wiñay Wayna, Phuyupatamarca), all of these surrounded by a breathtaking natural scenery. The forests abound in hundreds of species of orchids, brightly-colored birds and dream-like landscapes, the ideal complement to this indispensable hikers’ route. Machu Picchu was connected in the past with the city of Cusco and the rest of the Inca empire by amazing trails, specifically designed for the use of the Incas in perfect harmony with the flora and fauna of the area. It has to be said that they had an absolutely wonderful knowledge of architecture and construction. Throughout the whole trail you can locate some shelters surrounded by gorgeous country sites and great views. Some of the trails lead you to a few archeologycal remains. The Inca Trail to Machu Picchu is known as the most famous and tough hiking circuit all over South America, because of the conjunction of different elements that it offers to its visitors.
What you need to bring/carry on Inca Trail:
Sleeping bag (can be hired from our office for US. $ per day)
Sleeping mattress (we will provide you with this)
Rain jacket or poncho (plastic ponchos can be purchased in Cusco for a few dollars)
Strong, comfortable footwear
One complete change of clothing (you can afford to carry more changes of clothing if you hire a personal porters, see options below)
Sweater and jacket (something warm)
Water bottle and purification tablets (Micropur are recommended and can be bought in local pharmacies in Cusco)
Flashlight and batteries
Hat or cap to protect you from the sun
Sun block (sun protection cream
Toiletries, towel and toilet paper
Selection of small snacks, chocolate, dried fruit, biscuits etc,
Camera, plenty of film and spare batteries
Swimsuit (if you plan on visiting the hot springs at Aguas Calientes after the trek)
You also need to bring your original passport on the trail.
Options on Inca Trail:
(1) Personal porters can be hired to help carry your personal items such as clothes, sleeping bag etc. They can be hired for US. $ for all 4 days and will carry up to a maximum of 18kg (usually 1 porter between 2 persons is more than sufficient). You can hire the services of a half a porter to carry up to 9kg for US. $ However, even with a personal porter, you will still need to bring a day pack for essential items.
About 30% of the group usually have personal porters to help them. If you hire a porter we will provide you with a sack to put your items in to give to the porter. This extra porter will help you carry: duffle bag or sack (we will provide you with this), sleeping bag, mattress (we will provide you with this), clothing, sweater, jacket, wooly hat, scarf, gloves (something warm for at night), flashlight and batteries, toiletries. Your personal porter, however, will not walk at your side so you will still need to bring a day pack for essential items. You will meet up with your porter at lunch time and at the campsite late in the afternoon. Equipment to be carried by yourselves: small day pack, water bottle and sterilizing tablets, warm sweater, broad-brim or peaked cap, sun protection cream, insect repellent, toilet paper, selection of small snacks for the day etc, camera, lightweight plastic poncho just in case of rain (can be bought in Cusco for US$)
Important note: You must decide if you want to hire the services of a personal porter in advance when making your trek reservation since we need to purchase the porter’s trekking permit. You cannot decide to hire an additional porter once you arrive in Cusco.
(2) An extra night in Aguas Calientes can easily be arranged for you if required. Hotels costs and costs associated with returning to Machu Picchu the following day are additional to trek costs. It is best to make your hotel reservation directly.
(3) Vegetarian Meals. We can provide vegetarian meals or cater for special diets with no extra cost. Just let us know at least 2 days prior to trek departure.
(4) Sleeping bag hire . If you haven’t got a sleeping bag or you don’t want the hassle of bringing one all the way to Peru with you then we have sleeping bags in our office for rent. The price is US. $ per person per day.
Other information on Inca Trail:
(1) Luggage storage. When you go on the trek it is best to leave any luggage that you are not going to need behind in Cusco. Nearly all the hotels in Cusco provide a secure luggage deposit. Put any valuables in their safe. Very rarely do hotels charge for this service especially if you are returning to the same hotel after the trek. If there are any problems with your hotel we can arrange to store your luggage at our office.
(2) Time of arrival in Cusco after returning from the trek. Unless you plan to stay an extra night in Aguas Calientes, you will return to your hotel in Cusco for approximately 8:30pm on the 4th day of the trek.
Avoid disappointment – book your Inca Trail holiday in time Over the last few years, the Peruvian government has imposed increasing restrictions on tourism on the Inca Trail in order to protect it from overuse. The aim is to minimize ecological impact and erosion, mainly by having limited access and improving the quality of the operators. There are now only a very limited number of trekking permits available – 500 per day – and they are being issued on a first-come-first-served basis. In order to avoid disappointment we recommend booking well in advance (up to a minimum of 4 months in peak season), unless you are extremely flexible over your travel dates.
Inca Trail Notes:
1. Your arrival date in Cusco must be at least 2 days prior to trek departure since you have to pay the trek balance before 8:pm 2 days before you start the trek. Arriving 2 days prior to the trek also ensures that you are better acclimatized to the high altitude. However 3 days is recommended.
2. A free airport to hotel transfer is provided for groups of 2 persons or more. A single supplement of US$ will be charged for single travelers. Obviously if you want an airport to hotel transfer we will require your flight arrival details: Airline, flight number, expected arrival time and date. (to be confirmed at least 5 days in advance).
3. In order to qualify for a student discount you must be under the age of 26 and be in possession of a valid international student identity card ISIC. You must bring the ISIC card to the office when you pay the trek balance and take it with you on the Inca Trail trek as it will be checked several times by government officials. Unfortunately no other forms of student identity are acceptable (university cards, international youth cards etc). If you forget your ISIC card or lose it then you will have to pay an additional US$ for a standard trek permit. The government has recently become more fastidious with respect to lost ISIC cards and on several occasions has not given permission to the person to enter the Inca Trail
4. If you have a hotel reservation in Cusco please include the name of your hotel on the reservation form. This allows us to locate you if there are any problems with your arrival. You will also be asked to confirm your hotel in Cusco when you come to the office to pay the trek balance.
We will confirm your trek reservation by email within a couple of days.
We will require a trek deposit of US. $ per person paid in advance. The date by which the trek deposit has to be paid and details of how to pay the trek deposit will be included in the trek confirmation email.
05:30 AM onwards
Approximately 10:30 PM
What is included on Inca Trail:
Collection from your hotel in the morning.
Private bus to the start of the trail.
Inca Trail & Machu Picchu entrance fees (US.$ 89.7)
English speaking professional guide (two guides for groups over 10 persons)
Igloo tents – 2 persons in each 4 – person capacity tent with plenty of space for your backpacks
Double thickness foam mattress
Cook and Cooking equipment
Meals (03B, 03L, 03D) – food includes pancakes, omelets, soups, fresh fruit, avocado, pasta, chicken, fish, meat, rice, all rich in carbohydrates and suitable for trekking, hot drinks including coca leaf tea which is excellent for the altitude.
Teatime everyday (tea, coffee, biscuits, popcorn)
Porters (to carry the tents, food, and cooking equipment)
Dining tent with camp tables and chairs
Accommodation for our porters and cooks
First aid kit including emergency oxygen bottle
Bus from Machu Picchu ruins down to the village of Aguas Calientes
Train ticket (Backpackers service US. $ 48.5) from Aguas Calientes to Cusco
What is not included on Inca Trail:
Breakfast on the first morning. Some hotels offer an early morning breakfast service. If not, we stop at the town of Urubamba on the way to the start on the trek where you’ll have the opportunity to have breakfast
Meal in restaurant in Aguas Calientes (Machu Picchu Pueblo) on day 4 of the trek.
Entrance to the thermal springs in Aguas Calientes US. $ 4.
Sleeping bags can be hired in our office for US. $16 for the 4 day trek.
Tips for the guide, cook and porters
Day 1 on Inca Trail: Cusco - Huayllabamba
An hour ride by private bus takes us to Urubamba and then to the Ollantaytambo village, where we stop for 30 or 50 minutes to organize the porters and have the optional breakfast, after which we continue to the 82 Km, the starting of the trail. During 5 or 6 hours we hike to the village. Includes: lunch, dinner and camping.(3,000 m .s .n .m.) (9 000 ft).
Day 2 on Inca Trail: Huayllabamba-Pacamayu
A steeper climb takes us through the area of rain forest and up to Llulluchapampa and the valley. There are some very good views on the way to the Warmiwañusca Passage (4 200 m. s .n .m.) (13 700 ft.). That hike takes us 5 hours approximately. After the passage we steep down again into the valley of Pacaymayu.
Day 3 on Inca Trail: Pacymayu-Wiñayhuayna
At 7:00a.m. we get along climbing to the second passage. Glancing from here we`ll look at the first pass and forward to the high snow capped mountain known as the cordillera Vilcabamba. By crossing to the other side of the Runcuracay passage (3,800m.s.n.m.)(12,900ft.), we quickly notice a change in the vegetation, since we have now crossed the continent divided between the highlands and the Amazon basin. The Inca trail itself by now has become more apparent: a defined path made of flat boulders descending into the valley where we`ll get at the ruins of Sayacmarca. After having crossed the dry lake, we enter in the rain forest; the trees are adorned with orchids, paradise flowers and flock of parrots can be see on the trail, with an unforgettable fowl lodge along the valley. At one point we had been passed through an Inca tunnel, before getting at the ruins of Phuyupatamarca, the third passage (3,600m.s.n.m.)(11,600ft.). Far away we get glimpses of Pumasillo and Salkantay and, thousands of feet below, once again the Urubamba river. Soon we can see the MACHU PICCHU huge mountain around it. The long dessert begins about 2 hours downwards the lodge of Wiñaywayna.
Day 4 on Inca Trail: Wiñayhuayna-MACHU PICCHU
Finally we walk one hour to the Sun`s Gate after having watched the impresing view of Machu Picchu (new wonder of the world), and the full grandiose of the greatest archaeologicalremains ever revealed. We arrive at 6.00 a .m. before the majority of the tourists arrive, so we can appreciate in all its whole magnificence this magical citadel. Later we get the afternoon train from Aguas Calientes returning to Cusco.